Springwatch's Chris Packham tells Top Gear to keep their Dodge Viper

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Springwatch's Chris Packham tells Top Gear to keep their Dodge Viper

May 31, 2016 - 09:33
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Springwatch presenter Chris Packham opened the new series by throwing down the gauntlet to the critically panned Top Gear.

Springwatch's Martin Hughes-Games, Michaela Strachan and Chris Packham

By Henrietta Knight

Springwatch presenter Chris Packham opened the new series by throwing down the gauntlet to the critically panned Top Gear.

The 55-year-old said he would raise the bar with some spectacular wildlife to rival any flashy, fast car: "If you were watching Top Gear last night, you know that they started with a Dodge Viper. A brilliant, fantastic smart car, very fast.

"But I'm going to tell you Chris Evans and Matt LeBlanc, I'm going to raise you: a stone curlew live on our acid grassland. Look at that. You can keep your Dodge Viper! You look at the eye of that bird!"

Springwatch kicked off on BBC2 from an RSPB site in Minsmere, Suffolk, with the first ever golden eagle nest camera. They also feature webcams on swallows, tits, sparrow hawks and many small birds.

Hosts Chris and Michaela Strachan talked about several different nests that the Springwatch team were secretly filming. Crazy-haired presenter Martin Hughes-Games was following a herd of wild horses and looking at their habitat.

Viewers took to Twitter to say how excited they were about the return of the wildlife show:
"Can't wait for more #Springwatch Best TV show ever!!" tweeted Lora Davies @DaviesLora

Viewers got a double dose of nature. Before the big show, Springwatch Unsprung featured the team answering questions from viewers.

Ratings for the Top Gear premiere were a disappointing 4.2 million. That's two million down on the final programme with Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May.

Springwatch or Top Gear? You decide...

There are 6 Comments

Kevin O'Sullivan's picture

By Philip Star

BBC Two long programme Springwatch has returned to our screens tonight, It's a programme about wildlife. The location was the same as before because there is so many places the animals can go to that location.

Tonight they have covered the white bird and loads of other great animals. The previous year Blue Tit bird made a appearance again.

Also would like to mention that the show had a live camera online 24 hours a day where you can watch the latest animal action without any presenters: http://www.bbc.co.uk/springwatch

Henrietta Knight's picture

The nature programme pulled in an average audience of 2.6 million in its slot, the highest-rated premiere of Springwatch since 2009 - when Chris Packham first took over from Bill Oddie.

Springwatch will soon beat Top Gear by a mile. Bring on the birds' nests!

PhilipStar's picture

Tell you what, Even the live cameras are great to watch. Cute chicks and a Sparrowhawk to list a example. Too bad it's only on limited time on BBC Red Button. The main show is excellent but I like seeing national feed of the animals too.

So much better then crap Top Gear which gives me a headache, That is just from the shouting. Mind you I probably won't even watch Top Gear even with Jeremy Clarkson. Just not interested in the format really.

Springwatch is so much better with likeable presenters and a safe hour for everyone to watch.

Kevin O'Sullivan's picture

I guess if you like birds and animals and stuff, Springwatch is the show for you. But if you like cars, chances are you'll prefer Top Gear.

PhilipStar's picture

For cars, I think Wheeler Dealers on Quest is a much better show then Top Gear. Quite intresting actually but I don't watch the repeats.

Kevin O'Sullivan's picture

Springwatch Friday 3th June

by Philip Star

The programme is about wildlife by a excellent team who has being doing it years.

I enjoyed this show because the presenters are more relaxed and do not shout at you like Top Gear.

Because it's Springwatch there is not any plot as it's just animals. A simple format that works in the ratings.

I would so watch it again tonight. It's that great to watch.